Women have long been underrepresented in the tech industry. But women of color even more so: One study, by the National Center for Women in IT, reported that Black women in particular held only 3.1% of computing jobs in 2019.
Kimberly Bryant is the founder of Black Girls Code, an organization that helps young women of color from underrepresented communities learn skills to help prepare them for STEM careers (science, technology, engineering and math).
“It’s important that women have a seat at the table because we’re heavy tech adopters,” she says.
As part of CNET’s Now What series, we explore how the tech industry can diversify to not only address shifting demographics in the US and around the world, but also to help build better products.
“When you have only one demographic creating these products, we miss these opportunities to create technology solutions or utilize technology solutions to solve some of the big, hairy problems that persist in the world,” says Bryant.
With Black Lives Matter prompting many in the industry and beyond to reexamine systemic inequalities, Bryant hopes that tech companies will design for diversity and inclusion from the ground up, rather than needing to fix issues after the fact.
Bryant also discusses how her organization has been able to leverage online learning duringto reach even more young women through the Black Girls Code program. Watch more in the video on this page.